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Financing STEP

The Stanford Teacher Education Program (STEP) is committed to supporting a diverse and talented cohort of teacher candidates. With the support of generous benefactors and GSE and University leadership, Stanford has established several initiatives to support the cost of education for STEP students including STEP tuition fellowships, GSE need-based grants, the Dorothy Durfee Avery loan forgiveness program, and the GSE forgivable loan program. These initiatives, combined with a variety of federal and state grants and loan forgiveness programs, make it possible for many teacher candidates to attend STEP free of cost while also receiving a living stipend.

GSE Funding

STEP tuition fellowships

STEP offers tuition fellowships from $5,000 to $35,000 for eligible students. Awards are granted based on a combination of need and merit, and historically, over 50 percent of teacher candidates receive STEP fellowships. Based on available funding, a small number of students each year are selected for the Stanford Teaching Fellows Award, which covers the full cost of tuition for STEP.

GSE grants: need-based funding

The GSE offers a limited number of additional grants based on demonstrated financial need of up to $10,000.

Dorothy Durfee Avery and GSE forgivable loan programs

Stanford offers two generous forgivable loan programs of up to $35,000 for qualified future teachers. After completing STEP, graduates must work in a public school or an independent school serving primarily underserved students in the United States. Graduates make no loan payments as long as they teach in an eligible school. After two years of teaching, half the loan is forgiven; after four years, the remainder is forgiven.

The two forgivable loan programs are distinct but share the same financial opportunities and loan terms. Eligible STEP students will receive a forgivable loan from either fund.  

Learn more about the Avery and GSE loans

State Grant Programs

California currently offers exciting financial incentives to eligible future teachers, including the Golden State Teacher Grant of up to $20,000. Additionally, Cal Grant recipients may be eligible to extend their Cal Grant funding when seeking California teaching certification.

Federal Grant Program

Teach Grant recipients may be eligible to receive a typical amount of up to $4,000.

To learn more about Federal and State Grant Programs for STEP students, please visit Stanford's Financial Aid Office Grants Page.

Special Partnerships

STEP has a number of special partnerships that also offer additional financial support for eligible students. Learn more about the San Francisco Unified Teacher Residency program (with stipends up to $20,000), and STEP’s partnership with the Urban Ed Academy (with stipends up to $22,000 and generous additional support).

Applicants interested in these fellowship and grant opportunities must complete the fellowship section of the STEP supplemental application form when submitting the online application, as well as a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form. Admitted applicants learn of their fellowship award soon after admissions notifications. 

For additional details about funding sources, financial aid, and cost of attendance:

 Visit Stanford’s Financial Aid Office website

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